After suffering two restarts in the opening race due to wet weather, Linfoot and O’Halloran entered a 15-lap wet race with tensions high. Unfortunately, the “O’Show” crashed out in the opening lap after losing control of the front brakes, leaving Linfoot to race solo.
With team mate Jenny Tinmouth out of the race after a big crash in Q1, Linfoot had no other choice but to ride safely and bring home as many points as possible. After a bitter battle with the elements, Linfoot crossed the line in fourth to retain his third place in the championship standings – meanwhile Tinmouth returned to the circuit as a spectator after being given the all-clear at hospital.
The second race saw Linfoot start in the third place, and O’Halloran tenth. Both riders fought hard over 20 laps, with Linfoot finishing fourth and O’Halloran ninth.
Hazards on the track
Honda Racing started the third, and final, race in 17th and 18th. However, the red flag was brought out yet again – this time due to oil contamination on the track – and the race was restarted for a third time. The track was eventually cleared after a long delay and a ten-lap restart was announced. Linfoot lined up 12th, O’Halloran 18th.
The Aussie ace gained seven places in just the first lap, then dropped to 13th and eventually finished just outside the top-ten, in 11th. As a result, O’Halloran finishes the season in fifth, while his team mate – who crossed the line in sixth –takes fourth. Cumulatively, both riders scored 13 podiums during the year, in addition to one race win.
“It’s frustrating, but I am content enough and happy that I finished the year fourth,” Linfoot said. “It’s been a good year and we’ve shown what we’re capable of. A huge thanks to Honda and the team, my crew have worked so hard throughout to give me a great package with the Fireblade and I can’t thank them enough.”
“A massive turnaround”
O’Halloran had this to say: “All in all the season has been good. I managed to get my first BSB win and collected seven podiums along the way, and finished fifth in the championship. Looking back from last year to this year, it’s a massive turnaround. It’s the first year I have completed a Superbike season, so to wrap it up fifth is good. A massive thank you to the team and Honda, we’ve built all year and got faster and faster to cement our place in the top group. We’ve proved a lot with the competitiveness of the Fireblade and I’ve enjoyed myself.”
Last but not least, a word from the team manager, Havier Beltran:
“It’s been an incredible season for us; the Fireblade has been strong, we’ve been consistent, we’ve collected 13 podiums between Dan and Jason and scored a race win. They have worked so hard, along with all the crew. I think they should all be proud of that and what they have achieved. It’s a shame we weren’t able to run Jenny today, but unfortunately after the damage sustained to her machine yesterday I think it was the right choice. But overall we’ve had a fantastic season and I am looking forward to 2017!”